Message from the First Presidency, President Erying

One of the great tributes the Savior can give is to call us “friends.” We know that He loves with a perfect love all of His Heavenly Father’s children. Yet for those who have been faithful in their service with Him, He reserves this special title. You remember the words from the 84th section of the Doctrine and Covenants: “And again I say unto you, my friends, for from henceforth I shall call you friends, it is expedient that I give unto you this commandment, that ye become even as my friends in days when I was with them, traveling to preach the gospel in my power” (D&C 84:77).

 

We become His friends as we serve others for Him. He is the perfect example of the kind of friend we are to become. He wants only what is best for His Heavenly Father’s children. Their happiness is His happiness. He feels their sorrow as His own because He has paid the price of all their sins, taken upon Himself all their infirmities, borne all their troubles, and felt all their longings. His motives are pure. He seeks no recognition for Himself but to give all glory to His Heavenly Father. The perfect friend, Jesus Christ, is completely selfless in offering happiness to others.

 

Each of us who has made the baptismal covenant has promised to follow His example to bear one another’s burdens as He would (see Mosiah 18:8).

 

In the next few days you will have many opportunities to be a friend for Him. It may be as you walk on a dusty road. It may be as you sit down in a railroad car. It may be as you look for a place to sit in a Church congregation. If you are watching, you will see someone carrying a heavy burden. It may be a burden of sorrow or loneliness or resentment. It may be visible to you only if you have prayed for the Spirit to give you eyes to see into hearts and have promised to lift up the hands that hang down.

 

The answer to your prayer may be the face of an old friend, one you have not seen in years but whose needs suddenly come into your mind and heart and feel as if they are your own. I’ve had that happen to me. Old friends have reached out to me across the miles and the years to offer encouragement when only God could have told them of my burden.

 

Living prophets of God have asked us to be faithful friends to those who come into the Church as converts and to go to the rescue of those who have drifted away. We can do it, and we will do it if we always remember the Savior. When we reach out to give succor and to lift a burden, He reaches with us. He will lead us to those in need. He will bless us to feel what they feel. As we persist in our efforts to serve them, we will more and more be given the gift of feeling His love for them. That will give us courage and strength to reach out again and again in faithfulness.

 

And, in time and in eternity, we will feel the joy of being welcomed to the company of His faithful friends. I pray for that blessing for all of us and for those we will serve.

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13 Articles of Faith

Two years before he died, the Prophet Joseph Smith wrote them in a letter to a newspaper editor, John Wentworth, who had asked for information about the Church.

Ever since the Articles of Faith were written, they’ve inspired and directed us in the basic principles of our gospel. They enhance our understanding of certain doctrines and help us commit to living them. They invite further thought. And they’re a good tool for explaining our beliefs to people unfamiliar with them.

13 Articles of Faith
1. We believe in God, the Eternal Father, and in His Son, Jesus Christ, and in the Holy Ghost.
2. We believe that men will be punished for their own sins, and not for Adam’s transgression.
3. We believe that through the Atonement of Christ, all mankind may be saved, by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the Gospel.
4. We believe that the first principles and ordinances of the Gospel are: first, Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ; second, Repentance; third, Baptism by immersion for the remission of sins; fourth, Laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost.
5. We believe that a man must be called of God, by prophecy, and by the laying on of hands by those who are in authority, to preach the Gospel and administer in the ordinances thereof.
6. We believe in the same organization that existed in the Primitive Church, namely, apostles, prophets, pastors, teachers, evangelists, and so forth.
7. We believe in the gift of tongues, prophecy, revelation, visions, healing, interpretation of tongues, and so forth.
8. We believe the Bible to be the word of God as far as it is translated correctly; we also believe the Book of Mormon to be the word of God.
9. We believe all that God has revealed, all that He does now reveal, and we believe that He will yet reveal many great and important things pertaining to the Kingdom of God.
10. We believe in the literal gathering of Israel and in the restoration of the Ten Tribes; that Zion (the New Jerusalem) will be built upon the American continent; that Christ will reign personally upon the earth; and, that the earth will be renewed and receive its paradisiacal glory.
11. We claim the privilege of worshiping Almighty God according to the dictates of our own conscience, and allow all men the same privilege, let them worship how, where, or what they may.
12. We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers, and magistrates, in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law.
13. We believe in being honest, true, chaste, benevolent, virtuous, and in doing good to all men; indeed, we may say that we follow the admonition of Paul-We believe all things, we hope all things, we have endured many things, and hope to be able to endure all things. If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these things.

 

These outline what our church believes in, if any of you have any questions or comments,  please feel free to drop me a line. Can’t wait to hear from you!!!

LIFE IS GOOD!!!!

Serving our fellow man

Serve Others
Jesus Christ taught his disciples, “He who seeketh to save his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it” (JST, Matt. 10:39). This great and true counsel, given in three of the four New Testament Gospels, focuses on our keeping the commandments. Yet it promises us that as we lose ourselves in serving God by serving others, we will find our way to exaltation.

In his farewell address, King Benjamin taught this same great truth to his people more than a hundred years before Jesus Christ’s mortal birth: “When ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God” (Mosiah 2:17).

In fact, this general idea is so widely recognized in the world that social counselors everywhere often teach that discouragement and despair can sometimes be overcome by turning our attention away from ourselves and toward serving others. Of course, those with serious depression and clinically diagnosed emotional illness cannot be cured by merely focusing their attention elsewhere. But for many of us, discouragement or a case of the blues can be overcome by thrusting ourselves into a project in which someone else is the beneficiary. Some of the most rewarding work any of us will ever do is that which, when it is completed, we can look back on and can see how much someone else gained from it. In the process, optimism and hope about ourselves and life seep into our souls.

When we serve others, help them, strengthen them, we are in service to God. As He said, when you have done to the lest of these, you have done it unto me. We can serve God by serving others.

The Two Thousand Stripling Warriors!!

In the Book of Mormon, there is a true story about 2,000 young men with bravery, courage, and an unshakable faith for God! And they were all young men, and they were exceedingly valiant for courage, and also for strength and activity; but behold, this was not all—they were men who were true at all times in whatsoever thing they were entrusted. Yea, they were men of truth and soberness, for they had been taught to keep the commandments of God and to walk uprightly before him. These young men gathered together and promised to defend the liberty of their people and the Nephites.

Alma 53: 16-21

One of the most important parts in these verses is in verse 20, “this was not all—they were men who were true at all times in whatsoever thing they were entrusted.” Not only did they have courage, but they were honest and true in all that they did! They knew the commandments of the Lord and always strived to obey them. In doing so, they had the Spirit of the Lord with them, and with the Lord, all things are possible!
 
 
  
  ” … they had been taught by their mothers, that if they did not doubt, God would deliver them… And they rehearsed unto me the words of their mothers, saying: We do not doubt our mothers knew it… And now it came to pass that we, the people of Nephi, the people of Antipus, and I with my two thousand, did surround the Lamanites, and did slay them; yea, insomuch that they were compelled to deliver up their weapons of war and also themselves as prisoners of war… But behold, to my great joy, there had not one soul of them fallen to the earth; yea, and they had fought as if with the strength of God; yea, never were men known to have fought with such miraculous strength…”
 
 
Also, these men loved their mothers (as do I, I love you Mom)!!!! They had all these great attributes because their Mother’s taught them accordingly! Their Mothers knew that they needed to teach their children the ways of the Lord, as doing so, they raised what would later become the two thousand stripling warriors, men of mighty valor! WE DO NOT DOUBT OUR MOTHERS KNEW IT!! They had never fought in a battle before, nor did they have much experience concerning the matter. But because they cared more about their families lives then their own, and they were taught by their Mothers that the Lord would deliver them, they had full faith that they would win the battle and spare the lives of their families!
 
 
These Sons truly loved their families, just like I do! I really can relate to these Young Men, I too was taught about Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ growing up, and I have an unmeasurable love for my family! They mean everything to me, I highly doubt I would be even close to the man I am today if it weren’t for the love and care of my Mother and Father! I would be willing to do anything for my family, even if it meant laying down my life for them, I would! I am a Momma’s boy through and through, I love her to death, She is the best Mom a son could ask for! All the many happy joyful memories I have growing up, all the times she kissed my “Ouchies” better, Every night when she would read a book to me before bed time, sing me silly songs, each time she wiped away my tears, each time she gave me medicine when I was feeling sick, or gave me comfort when I was lost and felt alone! I love my whole family with every last fiber in my being!! I am truly grateful for all they do and what they have raised me to become!!! I Love my Heavenly Father, and I feel His love with me each time i do what is right! These things I bear testimony in the sacred name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, AMEN!!!!!! 

The Family:A Proclamation to the World

Following is a statement that the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles published about the Church of Jesus Christ of Later-Day Saints.   

“We, the First Presidency and the Council of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, solemnly proclaim that marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God and that the family is central to the Creator’s plan for the eternal destiny of His children.

All human beings—male and female—are created in the image of God. Each is a beloved spirit son or daughter of heavenly parents, and, as such, each has a divine nature and destiny. Gender is an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose.

In the premortal realm, spirit sons and daughters knew and worshipped God as their Eternal Father and accepted His plan by which His children could obtain a physical body and gain earthly experience to progress toward perfection and ultimately realize their divine destiny as heirs of eternal life. The divine plan of happiness enables family relationships to be perpetuated beyond the grave. Sacred ordinances and covenants available in holy temples make it possible for individuals to return to the presence of God and for families to be united eternally.

The first commandment that God gave to Adam and Eve pertained to their potential for parenthood as husband and wife. We declare that God’s commandment for His children to multiply and replenish the earth remains in force. We further declare that God has commanded that the sacred powers of procreation are to be employed only between man and woman, lawfully wedded as husband and wife.

We declare the means by which mortal life is created to be divinely appointed. We affirm the sanctity of life and of its importance in God’s eternal plan.

Husband and wife have a solemn responsibility to love and care for each other and for their children. “Children are an heritage of the Lord” (Psalm 127:3). Parents have a sacred duty to rear their children in love and righteousness, to provide for their physical and spiritual needs, and to teach them to love and serve one another, observe the commandments of God, and be law-abiding citizens wherever they live. Husbands and wives—mothers and fathers—will be held accountable before God for the discharge of these obligations.

The family is ordained of God. Marriage between man and woman is essential to His eternal plan. Children are entitled to birth within the bonds of matrimony, and to be reared by a father and a mother who honor marital vows with complete fidelity. Happiness in family life is most likely to be achieved when founded upon the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ. Successful marriages and families are established and maintained on principles of faith, prayer, repentance, forgiveness, respect, love, compassion, work, and wholesome recreational activities. By divine design, fathers are to preside over their families in love and righteousness and are responsible to provide the necessities of life and protection for their families. Mothers are primarily responsible for the nurture of their children. In these sacred responsibilities, fathers and mothers are obligated to help one another as equal partners. Disability, death, or other circumstances may necessitate individual adaptation. Extended families should lend support when needed.

We warn that individuals who violate covenants of chastity, who abuse spouse or offspring, or who fail to fulfill family responsibilities will one day stand accountable before God. Further, we warn that the disintegration of the family will bring upon individuals, communities, and nations the calamities foretold by ancient and modern prophets.

We call upon responsible citizens and officers of government everywhere to promote those measures designed to maintain and strengthen the family as the fundamental unit of society.”

This proclamation to the World means a lot to me and my family! I know that the things in here are true, and that if we follow this counsel from Heavenly Father, our lives will be blessed as we feel His love more abundantly in our everyday lives. I feel so blessed to have the strong family unity and support that I know have, without the Church, I doubt that our unity would be nearly as strong, especially in today’s society. For those of you that haven’t experienced an “ideal family,” know that Heavenly Father still loves you!! Through Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, all things are possible.  Praying to Him in the name of His son, Jesus Christ, will bring peace unto your soul,  I promise you that!! God bless!

Scripture for the week!

Doctrine and Covenants 123:11-17
 
11 And also it is an imperative duty that we owe to all the rising generation, and to all the pure in heart—

12 For there are many yet on the earth among all sects, parties, and denominations, who are blinded by the subtle craftiness of men, whereby they lie in wait to deceive, and who are only kept from the truth because they know not where to find it—

13 Therefore, that we should waste and wear out our lives in bringing to light all the hidden things of darkness, wherein we know them; and they are truly manifest from heaven—

14 These should then be attended to with great earnestness.

15 Let no man count them as small things; for there is much which lieth in futurity, pertaining to the saints, which depends upon these things.

16 You know, brethren, that a very large ship is benefited very much by a very small helm in the time of a storm, by being kept workways with the wind and the waves.

17 Therefore, dearly beloved brethren, let us cheerfully do all things that lie in our power; and then may we stand still, with the utmost assurance, to see the salvation of God, and for his arm to be revealed.

This Scripture located in Doctrine and Covenants Section 123 is one of my all time favorite scriptures! It talks about how important missionary work is and how we all need to “wear out our lives” in bringing God’s children to know the truth of all things and about thy restored gospel. There are people on this Earth that are kept from the truth because they don’t know where to find it. Many people out there are ready and willing to hear about thy gospel, and it is our duty and responsibility as missionaries to find those souls and bring them to a knowledge of our loving Heavenly Father and His son, Jesus Christ. Missionary work is vital for the salvation of others, and I feel privileged to be part of His great work!

Hello world!

Hello World! My name is Elder Marcus Lemmon! I am a missionary from the Church of Jesus Christ of Later-Day Saints! I am currently assigned as an American Sign Language Elder in the New York Rochester Mission! My purpose with this blog is to invite others to learn more about me and my church. So I’ll be posting some general information about myself and also about my LDS faith! If you have any questions or comments please feel free to drop me a line! I look forward to hearing from you soon!!!

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